Eli Wiesel wrote “…a Jew is never alone…for a Jew is forever surrounded by his community, visible or invisible.”
What is the Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary?
The Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary (JCFC) is a registered charity under the Income Tax Act. The mandate of the Foundation is to encourage long term giving through the establishment of endowment funds. A board of directors made up of community leaders supervises the management of these funds. The income available from investments is used to support charitable activities within the community. The long term mission of the JCFC is to build up permanent endowment funds as charitable capital for the community, helping to ensure the financial stability of the Jewish community–locally, nationally and in Israel– and all of its institutions for generations to come.
What is the difference between United Jewish Appeal Annual Campaign and the Jewish Community Foundation?
United Jewish Appeal (UJA) is an annual campaign conducted by the Calgary Jewish Federation that raises and distributes dollars every year for social welfare, social services and educational needs locally and abroad.
The Jewish Community Foundation works with individuals, families and their financial advisors to create a lasting legacy for our Jewish community.
Who can make a donation?
Anyone can make a donation. Contributions to the Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary are charitable tax-deductible donations. Donations can be made to existing funds and can be acknowledged through tribute cards (minimum contribution of $10). Donors can create their own endowment funds, directing the income of their fund to support the causes that matter most to them. Or, donors can take advantage of beneficial tax regulations that allow them to establish Flow-Through Funds which distribute fund capital to qualified donors.
Who can establish a fund?
Anyone can establish a fund. Funds established at the JCFC can support any recipient who is qualified under the Canada Income Tax Act. A donor who wishes to set up a fund should contact the JCFC offices to discuss the name and purpose of the fund, the amount and type of donation, and specific guidelines for their proposed fund, such as whether it is open to other donors or closed. Once we have that information, a fund agreement tailored to the donor’s needs will be prepared. We will work with you to ensure that your fund reflects your intentions.
Certain minimums apply: while funds can be opened any amount, distributions from endowment funds begin when the value of the fund reaches $5000. Funds set up under the auspices of the B’nai Mitzvah program can begin distributing grants when the value of the fund reaches $1000.
Donations in any amount are always welcome and can be added to any of our existing funds. The General Heritage Fund, for example, is administered at the discretion of the board and is often used for post-secondary bursaries.
What is a fund at The Jewish Community foundation?
The term “Fund: is used to describe a donor’s contribution. A contribution can be an endowment fund or flow-through (non-permanent) fund. Funds carry a name chosen by the donor.
An endowment is a permanent fund–the capital donated remains in the fund and the income is available to the donor for distribution. Since only the income is used, this form of gift ensures that a permanent legacy will exist in perpetuity. Typically grants from the fund are distributed annually to designated charities based on the guidelines outlined when the Fund is established, although these can be modified over time by the donor or donor’s designated representatives.
A donor advised fund is a non-permanent fund–the capital as well as the income is distributed. Distributions can be made at any time, and are based on the donor’s recommendations to the Foundation. Balances remaining in a donor-advised fund can be used to establish an endowment.
For investment purposes, all funds are pooled and managed in aggregate. For record tracking purposes, however, each fund is segregated and accounted for separately.
What is the difference between an endowment and a bequest?
An endowment is a gift to the Foundation made during the donor’s lifetime to be disbursed as directed by the donor. Receipts for income tax purposes for gifts of cash, securities or other assets will be issued at the time of their transfer to the Foundation.
A bequest is a direction in a will or other document which takes effect on the death of a donor. This can be used for a tax-deduction in the year of death. (link to wording for wills)
A donor may at any time give the Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary the gift of
- securities (bonds, mutual funds, stocks listed on public exchange)
- life insurance–existing or new policy
- and, yes, we accept credit cards.
What about insurance policies?
The donor can name the Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary as beneficiary of either a new or existing policy, or part thereof.
When a new policy is bought as a gift to a registered charity, the total sum of the annual premium or part thereof, is tax deductible. When ownership of an existing policy is transferred to the JCFC, the cash surrender value of the policy as time of transfer, if any, is tax deductible as a charitable contribution.
How can I maximize the tax benefits of my gift?
In Alberta we benefit from favorable tax laws. Some gifts made to a community foundation like the Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary can result in a more favorable tax benefit to the donor than can gifts to private foundations.
Details on the legal and tax ramifications of an insurance gift or any other gift to the Foundation should always be discussed with the donor’s professional advisors prior to the gift being made.
How can the capital be allocated?
You could declare a perpetual fund where only the income earned by the capital is designated as a gift or part of the capital could be allocated for a particular future project. In this instance the capital must be held for a minimum of ten years before disbursement or a flow-through fund can be set up with one or more designated beneficiaries.
How will the Donor’s name be perpetuated?
The Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary has provision for the creation of segregated funds with unique names. In this way the name of the fund can be associated with good works forever.
Can gifts be designated for specific purposes?
Yes. The by-laws of the Foundation give it broad terms of reference. Any Canadian registered charitable institutions and agencies can be designated as recipients.
What charities do your funds support?
The Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary can help donors support our community in many ways. We can support your United Jewish Appeal AND your United Way donations. We manage funds to support awards to struggling social justice writers and a fund to finance an essay competition encouraging Jewish youth connect with their heritage. Almost all of our Jewish and Calgary institutions and agencies have benefited from funds designated to these organizations by donors to the Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary.
Can the Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary handle gifts to non-Jewish charities?
Yes. The Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary is able to carry out the wishes of the donor to almost any registered charity the donor designates.
How can I invite my children into the process?
Private foundations set up by a previous generation often struggle with engaging the next generation in philanthropy in a meaningful way. The Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary can help to bridge the gap between generations, ensuring the philanthropic values of the original founders will carry on with future generations. We can help you to engage your children in every step of the legacy planning process, from suggestions on how to initiate a family discussion about your charitable giving and values to coordinating visits to the institutions and programs you are committed to supporting.
Who manages the Foundation?
The Jewish Community Foundation of Calgary is administered by a Board of Directors composed of members of the Calgary Jewish Community. The operations of the Foundation are subject to the restrictions of applicable federal law.
Managing your funds
An Investment Committee with considerable investment experience recommends policy and monitors performance through regular dialogue with the investment managers.
Investment management services are professionally provided under investment guidelines established by the Board. The funds are invested with Gluskin Sheff and Associates Inc. This pre-eminent Canadian wealth management firm has a long track record of strong investment performance serving high net worth private clients and institutional investors.
What does it cost?
Operating costs are recovered equitably across the assets and represent less than 1.5% of the asset base, well within industry benchmarks.
How can I get started?
Call the JCFC office to arrange a confidential meeting. We look forward to working with you to keep the community strong and vibrant for generations to come.